Howe praises 'great strike' from Mahrez

Eddie Howe and Claude Puel both praised Riyad Mahrez after the Algerian's spectacular equaliser for Leicester against Bournemouth.

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe   -  Getty Images

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe felt his side were denied a deserved victory after Riyad Mahrez scored a 97th-minute equaliser in their 1-1 draw at Leicester City, but admitted the goal was "a great strike".

The Cherries led for over an hour at King Power Stadium after Josh King scored a 35th-minute penalty and set his side on course for a third win in five Premier League matches.

However, after Steve Cook needlessly gave away a free-kick in the seventh minute of second-half stoppage time, Mahrez bent the resulting set-piece around the Bournemouth wall and earned Leicester a point.

Howe praised his players for their performance before the equaliser, saying: "I thought we had to show a different side to our normal game.

"We really did dig in, defend a lot of balls into the box and our defensive mindset was excellent.

"The goalkeeper and defenders put their bodies on the line, we weathered a mini-storm but I thought we'd be OK. A moment of magic killed us at the end."

"Credit to the moment that Mahrez produced," Howe added. "In my mind I'm analysing the wall, giving away the free-kick in the first place and those thoughts are flashing through my mind at the time.

"It's the last kick of the game and it's a great strike. We were good value for the win but it wasn't to be. We always want more than a point at home, but I was pleased with the mentality of the team."

Mahrez, who sought a transfer away from Leicester during the January transfer window, deserved his moment of celebration with the home supporters, according to Leicester boss Claude Puel.

The Frenchman said: "Mahrez is a valuable player for us. He always shows a positive attitude. I'm happy for him because he always wants to give his best for the team."

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